Here We Grow Again: ORCID in the US and Canada

Doug Wright's picture

As Director of Membership for ORCID, Douglas Wright manages our team of Regional Directors around the world, as well as having specific responsibility for ORCID membership in the US. Here are his reflections on the US and Canada in 2016, and his predictions for the upcoming year.

Can you give us a picture of ORCID in the US in 2016?

2016 was a busy year for us in the US, with lots of opportunities to meet with all sectors of our community. We hosted a roadshow in California, attended a variety of meetings, and held an outreach meeting in Washington, DC, hosted by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). We were delighted to welcome Marcia McNutt, President of the National Academy of Sciences, as our keynote speaker, as well as 150 people from across the research community for a day of panels, lightning talks, small group discussions, and networking.

Building on the work of the Sloan-funded Adoption and Integration program, we have seen growing understanding of ORCID and implementation in university systems in the US.  Over the last year, this has bloomed into four regional ORCID consortia: - CIC (now the Big Ten), GWLA (Great Western Library Alliance), NERL (NorthEast Research Libraries), and Lyrasis.  In addition, joining early federal agency adopters DOE, NIH, and FDA, we welcomed USGS, DOT, EPA, and NASA, as well as the Smithsonian. We’ve also grown our membership in other sectors, so that the US now represents a quarter of all ORCID members.

In terms of community adoption, in January, eight publishers and societies signed an open letter committing to implementing best practices for ORCID integration, and ultimately for requiring ORCID iDs for journal authors. As of the end of 2016 there were 25 signatories, including several of our US-based members - AAAS, American Chemical Society, American Geophysical Union, INFORMS, PLOS, Rockefeller University Press, ScienceOpen, and Wiley - as well as Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery and JMIR Publications (Canada). Usage also continued to increase - to well over two million Registry sessions.

And it was a good year for ORCID integrations. In 2016 over 60 US universities began  embedding  ORCID in their research information management/CRIS systems, data and thesis repositories, identity management systems, and more. It’s really exciting to see these projects go live and begin to provide real value to the scholarly community.

What about Canada?

Very early on, to support our users in Canada, we decided to provide the Registry in French.  There are now over 58,000 registrants in Canada and over a quarter of a million Registry sessions. The success of the French language Registry was the impetus for us to support other communities in local language, and we now support 14 languages in the Registry interface. We have been talking with organizations in Canada all along, and in 2016 interest grew as other Commonwealth nations - UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa - began adopting ORCID at scale. We were invited to three ORCID workshops - in Toronto, Ottawa, and Vancouver - where we were able to both share approaches to ORCID from around the world and learn about the needs of the Canadian community.  We were excited to welcome Canadian Research Council, Carleton University, Ifremer, the Journal of Rheumatology, Perimeter Institute, Process Pathways, and the Public Knowledge Project (PKP) as ORCID members during 2016, and we hope that they will soon be joined by many more Canadian organizations as part of a planned national ORCID consortium in 2017 - see the Joint Statement of Principles EN|FR.

And what do things look like for 2017?

We are very much looking forward to engaging with the community during our first ever US roadshow. Between April and September, we will be visiting Chicago, Atlanta, and Dallas, where we will be hosting ORCID community events. We’re delighted that a number of our local ambassadors will be attending and speaking. We’ll also be back in Canada this year, of course - more news on that when the consortium officially launches. And we are starting new initiatives to understand how ORCID may be able to improve connections between researchers and their inventions and patents, and at commercial research organizations. Look for us at professional and industry meetings throughout the year.   

We welcome your input!